Portland Divorce Lawyer explains Oregon Child Support Basics

Child support in Oregon is fixed by a statutory formula that applies the same to all cases.  The Oregon Department of Justice provides a child support calculator that can help you determine your child support obligation depending on your particular circumstances.  Despite these available tools, child support remains a constant source of confusion for divorce clients and is often a major point of contention in family law litigation.  An experienced Portland divorce lawyer can help you better understand these issues and advise you as to your best options when dealing with Oregon child support.

Child support is purely a statutory system and Oregon courts may not order anything related to child support that is not expressly permitted by statute.  ORS 25.275 establishes the procedures for determining the amount of a child support obligations and lays the foundation for the calculations undertaken in the child support calculator.  According to ORS 107.105(1)(c), child support can be ordered in a divorce or separation proceeding.  In fact, even if a party appeals a child support order, the court may still order temporary child support against that party pending appeal under ORS 107.095(4).  Few people know that child support can even be ordered while parties are still married under ORS 108.110 to 108.130.

One unique feature of Oregon law is that even adult children may be entitled to child support in certain cases.  A child who is over the age of 18 but under the age of 21 may be entitled to child support if he or she is enrolled in college, according to ORS 107.108.

One party may even be awarded expenses that they incurred for providing necessities to the family under ORS 108.040.   A child may sue for his or her own child support in certain circumstances under ORS 107.010.  The state may seek child support on behalf of a child and help enforce an existing order according to ORS 109.100.

Even where parties have never been married, a person can seek child support after establishing paternity under ORS 109.103 and 109.124 to 109.230.

A careful review of the Oregon statutes can teach one a lot about Oregon child support laws and the statutes are free to read online.  Child support is even treated specially under bankruptcy law, as any qualified Portland divorce attorney will tell you.  Of course, statutes and the case law that underlies them can be very confusing, so it is advisable to consult with an attorney before undertaking any action related to child support proceedings, enforcement, modification, or otherwise.  A good divorce attorney Portland Oregon practitioner may even offer a free consultation where he or she can explain the law to you and give you an idea of what their services cost.


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